A Gift Guide Under $30

Finding the perfect present for a loved one can be a challenge—especially for a girl on a budget. To make your holiday shopping a little easier this year, I curated a super-chic roundup of gifts, all for under $30. From warm socks and a gold iPhone case to a cozy pair of moccasins and the most fashionable rings, these gorgeous gifts look expensive and will likely earn you big brownie points. Even better, the title of chicest Secret Santa Ever.

Because being fabulous doesn’t have to come with a large price tag.

gifts under $30


Forever 21 iPhone case

Urban Outfitters gloves

West Elm owl mug

Old Navy socks

Urban Outfitters beanie and snood

Forever 21 chronograph watch

Forever 21 fringed suede moccasins

 B. Brilliant Rose gold over sterling silver ring and knot ring


Black Friday Showdown

Black Friday is an intimidating event, especially in an intense city like New York. You survived Thanksgiving, wasn’t that enough? The swarms of relatives, the overabundance of food, and you wore the appropriate outfit. Apparently you now have to battle the crowds for the sake of shopping. No, you don’t.

Before you brave the cold, snow, crowds and sales that inundate every Black Friday, check out my roundup of the best post-turkey deals to be had this holiday shopping season.

I sorted through the fluff and hype to highlight the real deals, but buyers must indeed beware– many of these mean hitting click and refresh as fast as your Internet connection will allow.

Most of all? Stay calm. Now, let’s talk sales. All links below are hyperlinked so click, click, click to get the deals! Ready, set, shop!

black friday steals

6PM // Black Friday 15% off DATE: 11.27 – 11.28 CODE: 6PMEU112720141585

Alice + Olivia // 25% off sitewide + free shipping DATE: 11.26-12.01

All Saints (US) // 20% off all styles DATE: 11.28-12.01 CODE: THANKS

Andrew Marc // Black Friday 24-hour flash sale, up to 80% off site wide DATE: 11.28-11.29 (until 7pm)

Anthropologie // Black Friday huge sale site wide // Cyber Monday  free shipping

ASOS (US) // Black Friday 30% off DATE: 11.27 (8pm EST) – 11.30 (8pm EST) CODE: TGIBF // Cyber Monday  30% off DATE: 11.30 (8pm EST) – 12.02 (3am EST) CODE: ILOVEMONDAYS

Athleta // 20% off DATE: 11.28-11.30 CODE: FIT20

Azalea // 30% off sale DATE: 11.26-12.01 // Cyber Monday  25% off sitewite

Banana Republic (US)// 50% off 1 full-priced item DATE: 11.27-11.28 CODE: BRFIFTY // 40% off site wide DATE: 11.27-11.28 CODE: BRFORTY

BB Dakota // Black Friday 30% off full-price styles DATE: 11.27-11.29 CODE: THANKS30 // Cyber Monday 30% off any purchase + free shipping DATE: 11.30-12.01 CODE: CYBER30

Bloomingales // Black Friday 50% off on a selection site wide DATE: 11.25-11.29 // Cyber Monday 25% off a selection of regular and sale price items DATE: 11.30-12.01

Bluefly // up to 80% off DATE: 11.28

Boden // 30% off sitewide + free shipping and free returns DATE: 11.27-11.30

Calvin Klein // Black Friday  50% off site wide DATE: 11.28

Club Monaco // Black Friday 30% off cashmere styles DATE: 11.28// Cyber Monday check for their biggest sale of the year

Current Elliott // Black Friday 25% off site wide DATE: 11.26-12.01 CODE: THANKS

Dolce Vita // up to 60% off, extra 20% off sale + free shipping DATE” 11.25-12.1 CODE:BLACKFRIDAY14 at checkout

Everlane // Black Friday Everlane has established The Black Friday Fund–donating all profits for the day to their factory partners in Hangzouh, China. All proceeds will go towards updating recreational facilities for the 300 people who live and work at the factory. By purchasing on Black Friday, customers will be able to see their individual contribution.

Gap (US) // Black Friday  50% off site wide DATE: 11.27-11.28 CODE: BLKFRIDAY

Helmut Lang - 40% off DATE: 11.25-12.01

Hudson Jeans // Black Friday 60% off select styles + free shipping DATE: 11.28-11. // Cyber Monday additional 20% off select styles + frees shipping DATE: 12.01

Kate Spade Saturday // Black Friday 30% off sitewide + free shipping DATE: 11.26-11.30 CODE: DEALME // Cyber Monday 30% off site wide DATE: 12.01 CODE: OHWOW

Lord and Taylor // extra 20% off almost everything + 25% off fine jewelry DATE: 11.25-11.30 CODE: THANKS // Up to 50% off woman’s fall boots + extra 20% off DATE: 11.25-11.30 CODE: THANKS

Luisaviaroma //extra 20% off DATE: 11.25-12.02 CODE: BFRS

Madewell // 25% off your entire purchase DATE: 11.25-11.30 CODE: GIFTON

Milly // Black Friday 25% off site wide DATE: 11.28-11.30 // Cyber Monday 25% off site wide + extra 10% off final sale DATE: 12.01 CODE: CM2014

Necessary Clothing // Black Friday 25% off site wide DATE: 11.26-11.30 // Cyber Monday 30% off site wide DATE: 12.01

Need Supply Co. // Black Friday 30% off sale items DATE: 11.26-11.30// Cyber Monday 20% off site wide DATE: 12.01-12.02

Nordstrom // up to 40% off select product

Old Navy - entire store will be 50% off DATE: 11.27 (4pm) – 11.28

Otte New York // Black Friday extra 40% off all sale merchandise DATE: 11.21-11.27 CODE: BLACKFRIDAYEA // Cyber Monday 20% off site wide DATE: 11.28-12.01

Revolve // Black Friday select items up to 80% off DATE: 11.28-11.30 // Cyber Monday 20% off final sale DATE: 12.01 CODE: cybermonday20

Saks Fifth Avenue (US, UK, & CA) // up to 60% off select styles DATE: 11.26-11.28 //up to 50% off DATE: 11.29-11.30

Shopbop // Tiered promotion: 15% off $250, 20% off $500, 25% off $1000 DATE: 11.25-12.01 CODE: GOBIG14

Singer 22 // Black Friday 20% site wide DATE: 11.25-11.30 CODE: TURKEY // Cyber Monday  20% off site wide DATE: 12.01 CODE: CYBER

SSENSE // up to 50% off

The Dreslyn // Black Friday 20% off site wide DATE: 11.27-11.30 CODE: BLACKFRIDAY // Cyber Monday 20% off site wide DATE: 12.01 CODEL CYBERMONDAY

Topshop (US) // 30% off select product, and 2 for 1 on mid-season sale items DATE: 11.27-12.01

Urban Outfitters // Black Friday  additional 25% off all sale online, additional 50% off all sale in-stores. DATE: 11.28 // Cyber Monday take $15 off $75, $25 off $100 and $50 off $150 DATE: 12.01

Whistles // 30% of sitewide

Zappos Charity Promotion Details: Announces Fast, Free Giving! For every order placed on from Black Friday to Cyber Monday Zappos will donate 10 meals to families in need, in partnership with Feeding America. Their commitment is to donate up to 5,000,000 meals ($500,000). That many meals would feed the entire state of Kentucky! Through Feeding America’s bulk discounts, subsidies, etc. they’re able to use $1 in donations to generate 10 meals. Feeding America is a national top-rated charity with a network of over 200 food banks, and supporting 61,000 local charities in all 50 states, DC, and Puerto Rico.”

Happy Shopping!



Date Night Outfit Inspiration

Have a hot date this weekend but can’t figure out how to look cute given the chilly temps outside? Problem understood. With that dating quagmire in mind, there lies a solution. The coat is the conversation piece, topping off the perfect cold weather evening ensemble underneath.

What inspires me on a night out is not so called investment pieces: my belted camel coat, or my oversized grey blanket coat, but a sexy fun piece that stands out in a crowd of basic. Did you ever think to wear a bubble gum pink coat? Whether headed out to dinner, an after-work party, (’tis the season folks) or a night out in the casinos, the evening calls for style and glamour. Full-length dresses are elegant, but too restricting and formal, and just too skimpy is inappropriate. Although it may not be exactly Las Vegas to where I would head, picking something that is elegant as well as comfortable is essential. I haven’t visited a casino in a long time, but fashion, like slot machines is always a gamble. If you ever want to learn about slot machines, you can at Gaming Club, but I do know that personal style takes nothing but practice, practice, practice.

With just ten pieces, here is how you marry the perfect cold-weather evening ensemble that fuses function with fashion, keeping you warm and just the right amount of sexy for a night out on the town.

Happy Friday!

what to wear on a date night

To shop the looks, just click the links below, or hit the pictures and go straight to the website.

DKNY baby-pink shearling coat // Saint Laurent lace-up boots / cashmere socks // Topshop Unique embellished cotton shirt // David Koma edgy pencil skirt // Acne blanket scarf // embellished sweater // CA & Lou arrow bracelet // a shot of pink on the lips and cheeks, I like this all-in-one lipstick that doubles as a blush from Stila, and to top it off, a monogrammed velvet clutch by the boss Saint Laurent 


Hats Off To You


‘Tis the season for giving and keeping warm. Fedora hats are on my radar this season, until, of course, its beanie time.

Shop my pics below:


Photo: Lydia Hudgens


Lace-Up Boots

The month of November calls for comfort with a capital C.

Running around the city going from point A to point B, in a grid-like city like New York, your feet become your car and the vehicle that transports you around. Unless of course you have an Über account.

Although I will most probably resort to wearing sneakers for December’s gift-buying season, I am now addicted to flat, lace-up black boots. They have become my go-to footwear of choice as good old black remains a big favorite. I have had my eye on these mukluks for city-dwellers by Penelope Chilvers for a while, but now that they are finally available in the US, I no longer have an excuse whether these or not these will be mine.

Wearing flats aren’t the best option for the vertically challenged, but my feet will thank me come December.

Click the pictures below for your daily dose:

black boots

From left to right:

Asos Acting Up suede ankle boots

Saint Laurent buckle lace-up boots

Jil Sander black lace-up boot, get a similar pair here or here

Sam Edelman black combat boots

Giuseppe Zanotti black boots

Penelope Chilvers calf-hair ankle boots

Saint Laurent Patti Lace-ups


Sale Time

Just a quick reminder that it’s sale time on one of my favorite sites, SHOPBOP. Whether you’ve been holding out on your favorite basics for the upcoming winter season or lusting over a new bag for the past few months, there’s really no better time to pull the trigger than sale time at 25% off site-wide. Personally, I spend most of my time perusing through the site for good basics like striped tees and pajamas.  And let’s be honest, I’m always looking for more stuff and my wish list is never-ending… here are just a few of my favorite picks! Shopbop CHANEL CC bucket bag // AUDEN earrings //  DANNIJO sami ear cuff // ALEJANDRA J sandals // ELIZABETH AND JAMES ring //  T By ALEXANDER WANG // TORY BURCH leather belt bag // DITA VON TEESE sunglasses // PAULA BIANCO wrap scarf // KATE SPADE blue embossed croc watch// SALVATORE FERRAGAMO slip-ons


Summer Baubles

If there is anything I have learned about summer, is that it is short-lived. It occurred to me yesterday morning when I went to take a walk in my neighborhood, I was experiencing a textbook case of bittersweetness. August signifies heat and humidity, and after the winter we endured, I marveled in the fact that my fingers were ballooning as the humidity expanded their width.

It is already mid-August which means September is right around the corner. And fashion week! Until that circus, I am reveling in the fact that my legs flap around in shorts, my neck is exposed to the sky, and my wrists, legs, ankles, and lobes are just letting loose. In an attempt to keep summer long-lived, I will wear things that scream summer which for me translates to… accessories!

This summer I was introduced to Vanesa Farfan, a unique collection of minimalist and simplistic designs with delicate details that make a statement. Elegant and refined, I love piling on layers of suede, 14K gold, and silk cord bracelets to decorate my limbs and define my style.

Launched in June of 2011, the brand is sold online and in high-end fashion boutiques throughout the country and ranging in price point from $10 to $120, there is something for everyone. Check out her looks below. All are available at Vanesa Farfan.

vanesa farfan

accessories for summer

vanesa farfan

vanesa farfan

vanesa farfan

vanesa farfan

vanesa farfan

vanesa farfan

Shop some of my favs here:


Going Solo

I just unpacked from my weekend trip oversees, and I am proud to say that I brought nothing but a few slips of lingerie, shorts, a blazera pair of jeans, and my daughter. Before I departed, I vowed to take nothing but what I could fit in my carry-on bag, and when I arrived, I still found that there was no reason to pack anything other than white sneakers and a pair of heels. As far as accoutrements go, I only packed one earring and one necklace to lighten my load.

A single oversized earring? Yes, and the best part was when I had a conversation with somebody, they immediately stared at my ear and asked if I was missing something.

“Yes, I have one earring on and no, I replied, I’m just going solo tonight.”

The statement earring is back, yet again, but this time not in pairs. So if you have a tendency to lose one, you’re in luck! The Fall 2014 runways at Louis Vuitton and Céline embraced the art of only wearing one, a singular, emulating true French je ne sais quoi. These editorial darlings below seen on CR Fashion Book confirmed my desire to try the trend. I’m not convinced it is just a trend, but the good news is, you can always clip one on the other lobe, once you tire of the look. Natch.

leather jacket and earring Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane

Leather jacket and earring Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane

single earring New York Fashion Hunter

single earring New York Fashion Hunter

Shop the look here:


Photos: Lydia Hudgens


Statement Sunglasses

Summer is nearly upon us, rain, rain go away!, if the upcoming Father’s Day weekend is nothing else a time to celebrate your dad, but also a marker of many mid-June festivities on the imminent horizon. Did you know on average, men buy new underwear once every seven years? I have trouble every year figuring out what to get Dad, I’m not about to go here, so this year I am getting him a pair of these sunglasses and a Nutribullet. Go Dad. Make us proud.

The sun will be shining this weekend, guaranteed by the one and only Weather Channel, wear sunscreen, and unless you are a FBI agent, there’s really no excuse to be sporting a pair of boring sunglasses. I prefer shades that make my peepers pop and give my overall ensemble an effortlessly cool-and-quirky vibe. Those basic styles devoid of novelty, color, or daring shape? No, thank you.

So, here I rounded up some statement-making sunnies that are far from blah. Go for a pop of color, all-white bling, aviators, or vivid, mirrored lenses. And the best part? They are all under $100.00!

Set your sights on these bold specs, and prepare to have all eyes on you.

sunglasses for summer

sunglasses for summer

From left to right: Asos sunnies // Kamali Kulture get a similar pair from The Row

Asos kitten sunglasses // Marc by Marc Jacobs Cat Eye

River Island white round sunglasses // Minkpink Candy Land Cat-Eye sunglasses

Mango aviators // Vince Camuto oversized oval sunnies

Check out these sunglasses from Chilli Beans . They are what dreams are made of. Boom. Happy Friday!

Chilli Beans OCCL14320401_2_L



Pearls of Wisdom

In a desperate plea for April showers to bring May flowers, after today’s monsoon, tis’ the season to start playing dress up. May Day is tomorrow!, and along with blooming flowers comes itchy eyes and throats, and a host of springtime festivities. As the fashion kingdom prepares for the annual Met Gala, fashion’s answer to Prom, it’s promise is to attract a lineup of commanding evening dresses on May 5th, which got me thinking. You need to have serious stamina to pull off an oversize frock. Also consider that with May comes Mother’s Day, Graduation ceremonies, weddings, and other merrymaking activities followed soon after by the fast and furious preparations for June i.e: the annual shipping of your children, and their prospective trunks, off to camp.

I’m tired already just thinking about it.

Considering all these events and commitments that are infiltrating your calendar, my suggestion would be to do a cardio workout a few days a week to get your body in tip-top physical form, and stick to your guns when it comes to personal style. If all your fashion options fail, and you can’t pull off the heavy weight gowns, why not try some pearls.

No longer just your grandmother’s gem of choice, pearls are losing their stuffy, old-school reputation and holding their own as the bauble for the cool-girl set this spring. Reimagined in two-tone detailing and larger-than-life shapes, these next-wave jewels are equal parts sophisticated and modern — ready to make their way into your daily accessories rotation. Whether you’re a self-confessed lover of saltwater cultured pearls or a fan of freshwater cultured pearls, elegant pearl jewelry is timeless. If you are in the market for the most fabulous pearls, check out the selection at soon to be live Mesenso who has an elegant selection.

For your shopping desires, I have culled these gorgeous iterations, from evil-eye earrings to multi-stacked rings, all begging for a primo spot in your jewelry box this season. But, don’t fret if your budget’s not suited for the real deal, because there’s a mix of thrifty costume pieces and splurge-y designer items ahead. Grandma’s gonna be so jealous.

pearl jewelry Shop the post here: